Steve Jobs knows how to wow a crowd. No media center at Mac world. Instead, new iMacs with Intel chips inside. New iLife with upgraded applications and more features to .Mac.
Prepare to be wowed. The iMac, decidedly a consumer oriented machine, gets Intel’s dual core chips to make the Mac over twice as fast as yesterday’s Mac.
The new iMacs come in the same shell enclosure as the previous iMac. Same one piece design. Same elegant functionality. Same iSight camera inside.
Intel’s also inside in the form of new Intel Core Duo chips which make this the fastest desktop Mac ever.
The new iMacs also sport the ATI Radeon X1600 graphics processor and a new version of Mac OS X for Intel, version 10.4.4 (available now).
Also included in the new iMac is iLife ‘06 which is upgraded to work with the new Intel-based iMacs.
New in iLife ‘06 are enchancements to iPhoto (faster, 250,000 photos), iDVD (now does widescreen DVDs), GarageBand (many new features).
iLife is published as a Universal Binary which means it runs on Macs with IBM’s PowerPC processors and the new Intel-based Macs with Mac OS X for Intel.
Also built in to the iMac is the iSight camera and the Front Row application to control iLife via an included remote.
Apple claims the iMac with Intel Inside will run two to three times faster than the previous iMac with IBM’s G5 chip. The benchmark graphics on the iMac home page are impressive.
Basically, to iMac buyers, not much has changed with the new iMacs. On the outside, everything looks the same. On the inside, it’s new architecture with Intel’s dual core Core Duo chips.
Mac OS X will still look and run like Mac OS X, only the version is now 10.4.4.
The fears of losing Firewire are, as expected, unfounded. The new iMacs appear identical to previous iMacs. Airport Extreme is built in. So is Bluetooth and Gigabit ethernet. Firewire and USB 2.0 are there. So is the Apple Remote and Mighty Mouse.
The ATI Radeon X1600 graphics card is new, but still with 128 megabytes of video memory, including a Mini-DVI output port that supports DVI, VGA and S-Video with an adapter.
What you get for the same money as yesterday’s iMac G5 is speed. And iLife ‘06. Otherwise, everything else looks to be the same. Price. Looks. Maybe that’s the way it should be during a transition. Or not.
What do you think of the new iMac? To review Bambi’s detailed notes ‘live’ from the keynote presentation, Click Here.